My summer may have been filled with trips to the lake, fireside suppers, backyard sun-tanning and cousin supervision, but Erik's summer?
It looked pretty different.
6 days a week he drove about 40 minutes (one way) to and from my parents' cabin at Lake Metigoshe where he worked long days on completing the cabin renovations.
Last year was the year of surprises. The renovation plan started off with a "let's-just-take-this-one-wall-down-and-open-up-the-living-space" kind of idea... But anyone who watches a little HGTV knows how those stories often turn out. Erik felt a lot like Mike Holmes as he lamented the bad, bad skills of the person who built the cabin in the first place.
So by this year, the surprises had all been uncovered and mostly corrected, and the main floor was totally renovated. So, it was time to focus on the upstairs (bedrooms/bathroom) of the cabin as well as replace the roof.
(I included these roof pictures mostly for Erik's benefit, since to me, a roof is a roof...)
But it is noteworthy to mention that this little room was an addition. Thankfully it worked out for one of Erik's employees to come out and work with him for 3 weeks. He was super helpful with this whole part of the reno:
New siding for the cabin was one of the things that didn't get completed this summer. It'll be nice to see how it looks when it's all finished on the outside.
We're bruised already from kicking ourselves for not taking just a few pictures of the inside of the cabin before the big demo started last year. But you know how it is when you're anxious to get going with a project...
Lesson learned for next time.
So I scoured my computer for any pre-demo-phase pics. The pickings were pretty slim but here are a couple...
Note the pre-reno ceiling and lack of window casings...
And if you can look past cute 2-year-old Keziah and her marshmallow, you can see the old lino and carpet on the floor...
Yeah, those pictures don't really help too much.
So, let me paint you a mental picture:
70's style everything, various carpets in shades of green and brown throughout, 2 separate and small living spaces on the main floor (the inner one being really dark and mostly occupied by an old, non-functioning hot tub), a narrow and crooked staircase that made you feel a little like you were in some mysterious anti-gravity house whenever you climbed up and down, small wooden windows (some of which didn't even open, I don't think), a very outdated bathroom with camper-style toilet...
The list could go on but I hope you can visualize it in your mind. Just a little bit.
We did start taking lots of pictures in the demo stages, so here are some before and afters:
Note the old cabinets and small window. The studs you see left standing are what's left of the wall that separated this living space from the darker, hot-tub room. In the back right was where the staircase was.
Larger window, wood ceiling with pot-lights, IKEA cabinets, laminate floors...
And an open floor plan creating one larger kitchen/living space.
(Now to convince Mom and Dad to put some new furniture in there!)
Here is a before shot looking from the dark hot tub room towards the front living room/kitchen.
The hot tub room was raised up slightly and so we spent hours digging countless wheelbarrow-fuls of dirt out. I can say "we" because I actually helped. It was pretty intense.
Then Erik had to pull out these old wooden floor beams:
Floors are nicely levelled and unified with only a couple of posts breaking up the large area.
A closer look at Erik's handiwork with the posts and beams.
Looking up where the narrow stairs used to be before:
Staircase looking down before:
As for the upstairs, Erik turned 3 teeny tiny bedrooms into 2 more spacious ones. Late in the game, the decision was made that Erik would skip the drywall mudding/taping phase so he could focus on what he's really good at, which is the finish carpentry. So, you'll have to visualize all of these walls after they're painted...
The new master bedroom has 4 nice big windows and overlooks the lake:
It's a pretty nice view from up there.
The beam detail that Erik created for the upstairs. A ceiling fan will replace the dangling light bulb.
Erik sprayed the doors to match the trim.